Canadiens 4, Bruins 1
Winning their fifth straight against the Bruins, the Canadiens (29-20-5) chased Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask in the second period and won their second straight after a four-game losing streak.
Rask, who gave up three goals on 18 shots and was clearly angry when he left in favor of Chad Johnson, fell to 2-10-2 lifetime against Montreal.
Center Daniel Briere had a goal, his eighth of the year, and an assist. Right winger Brendan Gallagher had two assists and defenseman Alexei Emelin (his first), left winger Max Pacioretty (No. 23) and right winger Brian Gionta (his ninth) also scored for Montreal.
The first-place Bruins, losing for only the third time in their last 15 home games, are 34-16-3 and eight points ahead of the Canadiens in the Atlantic Division.
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Blue Jackets 5, Capitals 2
Center Ryan Johansen broke out of a brief scoring slump with his third two-goal game of the season, leading the Columbus Blue Jackets to a much-needed 5-2 win over the Washington Capitals.
Centers Derek MacKenzie and Brandon Dubinsky and right winger Cam Atkinson also scored for the Blue Jackets, while defensemen Jack Johnson and Fedor Tyutin each had two assists.
After a franchise-record, eight-game winning streak earlier this month, the Blue Jackets (26-23-4) lost three consecutive games in regulation for the first time since November before the win while the Capitals (24-21-8) lost for the seventh time in 10 games.
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Maple Leafs 6, Panthers 3
The Toronto Maple Leafs struck for two goals in the first minute of the second period and went on to defeat the Florida Panthers 6-3 for their second win in a row.
Left winger James van Riemsdyk put the Maple Leafs ahead with his career-best 22nd goal of the season 58 seconds into the second period 31 seconds after left winger Mason Raymond had tied it at 2-2.
The Maple Leafs (29-21-6) also scored twice early in the third period to put the Panthers away (21-26-7).
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Senators 5, Lightning 3
The Ottawa Senators worked themselves into the playoff picture for the first time since November 11 with a 5-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
The win was the second in a row for the Senators (24-20-10), and it gives them 58 points, good for possession of the last wild-card spot in the tight Eastern Conference standings.
The Lightning (31-18-5) suffered their second consecutive defeat and also lost star goalie Ben Bishop, who left with a possible concussion after a collision in the second minute of the game.